Bradford Cox (aka Atlas Sound) is one of the more unique and prolific people in music; if Animal Collective is dancing in the sun, Atlas Sound is collapsing from heatstroke. This download only EP is just one of dozens of free EPs released on his band Deerhunter’s website: deerhuntertheband.blogspot.com . Unlike his other albums, this is pure ambient and it seems to be some kind of concept record judging by the titles which describe what “we” did on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. This is Cox’s unique brand of ambient music; a stumbling dream fuelled by tranquillizers and half-remembered alternate realities. Every track has a title which describes the music itself so perfectly that they’re almost cinematic, even if the titles are meticulously detailed. ‘Friday Night We Took Acid and Laid on Matt’s Bedroom Floor Staring at His Ceiling Fan While His Parents Watched T.V. Downstairs’ is easily the stand-out track; an on/off keyboard melody, electrical buzzing and distantly clattering glitches all combine with Cox’s smeared background vocals to make a genuinely transporting sound painting, both calm and deeply uncomfortable. The last minute sees the glitches coming slowly to a peak, as if the people in the title can see the ceiling fan straining to escape from its fixture. ‘Saturday Night We Went Swimming And There Was A Light In The Water’ is a beat-less soundscape with a half-innocent, half-eerie glow about it; it’s very much the successor to Eno’s ‘2/1’ on ‘Music For Airports’. The 14-minute ‘Sunday Evening We Relaxed In Our Rooms and Called Each Other on the Phone’ is awash with in-focus-out-focus whirrs and waves and feels like being half asleep in the back of a car as you pass by buzzing neon lights.
Like all ambient, this is meant to be background music and not solely focused on; it’s all about lending an atmosphere and it works pretty well. This is something you should hear lying down in front of a dying fire after getting one hour’s sleep. ‘Friday’ is the most individual and effective here since it’s exactly how I would imagine a drug experience to feel like; quiet, and sedating, but equally disconcerting. And hey, it’s free, so what have you got to lose other than 25MB of disk space. Maybe it’s because I’m quite heavily into atmosphere music and ambient that I like this record and a lot probably won’t get it at all, but still, it’s surprisingly effective when you’re in the right mood.
*Plus it should be noted that this sounds virtually nothing like Atlas Sound’s other records.*
Listen to this: 4AM, half asleep on a warm floor.
Key Track: Friday…